Chronic conditions and work

Chronic conditions refer to diseases and health conditions that last a long time and generally progress slowly. Although they can occur at any age, they become more common later in life. They are often invisible, sometimes episodic (i.e. they come and go) and often characterized by fluctuating symptoms that leave people disabled one day and functional the next. Examples of chronic diseases include arthritis, diabetes, chronic pain, depression and fibromyalgia. IWH research in this area focuses on the effects of chronic disease on work participation and productivity, as well as the effectiveness of job accommodations, benefits and other programs to ensure workers with chronic disease can stay at, or return to, work.

Featured

A paramedic wearing a face mask stands next to two ambulances
At Work article

Coronavirus: The risks to essential workers with hidden health conditions

It’s a time of great uncertainty for many people across the workforce, but one group of workers have additional reasons for worry. In this op-ed, IWH Scientist Dr. Arif Jetha cautions that we can’t forget about workers who have invisible health conditions.

Published: April 28, 2020
Stone arches and stain glass windows in the interior of the Canadian Parliament
At Work article

What research can do: IWH researchers help MPs examine episodic disabilities and work issues

IWH senior scientists presented expert testimony to a federal standing committee looking at the needs of people with episodic disabilities—an example of how research can support policy-makers in addressing important societal issues
Published: November 26, 2019
A paramedic wearing a face mask stands next to two ambulances
At Work article

Coronavirus: The risks to essential workers with hidden health conditions

The COVID-19 pandemic has left many in Canada’s workforce worried about their health and finances. Those worries are even greater for workers living with an underlying and invisible chronic health condition, writes Dr. Arif Jetha in an op-ed piece.
Published: April 2020
The Conversation logo
IWH in the media

Coronavirus: The risks to essential workers with hidden health conditions

The COVID-19 pandemic has left many in Canada’s workforce worried about their health and finances. Those worries are even greater for workers living with an underlying and invisible chronic health condition. In the planning of health and safety responses to COVID-19 and the ultimate reopening of workplaces, employers should be aware of the unique needs of this potentially vulnerable group of workers, writes IWH Scientist Dr. Arif Jetha in The Conversation.
Published: The Conversation, April 2020
The Globe and Mail logo
IWH in the media

Despite social distancing, many front-line public workers feel the strain

Stress and anxiety are rising among staff who work customer-facing jobs and feel their work environments may put their health and safety at risk, writes Andrea Yu. Many vulnerable front-line workers, for example those with pre-existing health conditions, may feel like they lack the power to voice their concerns, says IWH Scientist Dr. Arif Jetha in the article.
Published: The Globe and Mail, March 2020
Journal article
Journal article
Journal article

Long working hours and the prevalence of masked and sustained hypertension

Published: Hypertension, February 2020
Stone arches and stain glass windows in the interior of the Canadian Parliament
At Work article

What research can do: IWH researchers help MPs examine episodic disabilities and work issues

IWH senior scientists presented expert testimony to a federal standing committee looking at the needs of people with episodic disabilities—an example of how research can support policy-makers in addressing important societal issues
Published: November 2019
Stone arches and stain glass windows in the interior of the Canadian Parliament
Impact case study

IWH researchers help MPs examine episodic disabilities and work issues

IWH senior scientists presented expert testimony to a federal standing committee looking at the needs of people with episodic disabilities—an example of how research can support policy-makers in addressing important societal issues.
Published: November 2019
Journal article
Journal article

Exposure to crystalline silica in Canadian workplaces and the risk of kidney cancer

Published: Occupational and Environmental Medicine, September 2019